March 30, 2015

To Stop Cancer: Block its Messages

Weizmann Institute scientists identify a potential drug molecule that stops cancer cells, but not healthy ones, from getting their “mail”

(March 30, 2015)  The average living cell needs communication skills: It must transmit a constant stream of messages quickly and efficiently from its outer walls to the inner nucleus, where most of the day-to-day decisions are made. But this rapid, long-distance communication system leaves itself open to mutations that can give rise to a “spam attack” that promotes cancer. Prof. Rony Seger of the Weizmann Institute's Biological Regulation Department and his team have now proposed a method of shutting off the overflow of information before it can get to the nucleus. If the initial promising results hold up, the method could be used to treat a number of different cancers, especially several that develop resistance to current treatments, and it might possibly induce fewer side effects than those treatments do. These findings appeared today in Nature Communications.

read entire press  release